Charlestown Township
Environmental Advisory Committee (EAC)
Meeting Minutes
Monday, December 11, 2023

Armstrong opened the meeting at 7:10.

Carol Armstrong (Chair), Dan Walker (Vice Chair), Meg Solomon (Secretary), Anu

November minutes approved.

Place Holders

(Reminder of EAC-initiated projects for next 6+ months):

New Business

  1. Reorganizational Meeting for 2024 - will be right before our monthly January meeting. Solomon agreed to continue as Secretary. Walker will continue as Vice-Chair. Armstrong will >continue as Chair, all pending approval by the BoS.
  2. WeConservePA - requested that EAC submit ‘lightning session’ topics for statewide conference on February 24 - Armstrong sent 2; Battery Collection, and EAC table conversations that were had on Election Day.

Ongoing Business

  1. Policy regarding use of chemicals on township properties - Armstrong presented information on this topic to P&R. P&R voted that McKinley Fox will participate with the EAC in creating a parks maintenance policy that eliminates synthetic chemicals. Tina Daly also interested. Step 1 - apply for the ‘Parks for a Sustainable Future’ program with Beyond Pesticides- create a proposal with possible grant from Beyond Pesticides. EAC identified 2 targets; Charlestown Park, and Charlestown Mill. Armstrong suggested we might get some input from RES. After EAC and P&R approvals, and assistance from ‘Parks for a Sustainable Future’ we would provide a proposal to the BoS.
  2. EAC Membership - Armstrong contacted 3 people who seemed interested but so far, no results. Goodman still has 2 people to contact.
  3. Adoption of Charlestown Road for cleanup for PennDOT - Need to schedule next clean-up and get adoption signage from PennDOT- Walker suggested March for the next cleanup.
  4. Recycling of Food and Waste in Charlestown - Solomon provided a summary of composting projects/trials in other townships within Chester County. She will call Charles Buck about Brightside ideas for having a compost from the community garden. She will discuss a Visioning Grant application to present to Charlestown Township Planning Commission with Rachel Griffith. Charlestown Township is very diverse – multiple haulers, multiple recyclers, water from different sources etc.
  5. Stream Naming of headwater tributary of French Creek at Charlestown Park - USGS is working on reviewing application that Armstrong completed.
  6. Single Use Plastic bags/items ban - pending ordinance review by Planning Commission and BoS.
  7. Nature News topic for January - Sustainability within the medical and hazardous waste industries, food and farming sustainability, construction sustainability, and energy sustainability were all discussed.
  8. Township Newsletters - (due dates are 1/15, 4/15, 7/15, 10/15.) Next one due to township on 1/15.
  9. Bird Town Programs - Goodman and Walker put 8 new Barn Owl and Kestral boxes at several private landowner locations. Goodman owes report to Bird Town.
  10. Community Education - no updates, future ideas include:
    1. Bird Town programs
    2. Tour of invasive species in township
    3. Watershed friendly property certification - have meet-up in a restaurant or pub.
  11. Riparian buffer maintenance - Armstrong requested approval from BoS to mow aisles along the trees in the field near community garden in Brightside in order to meet the grantor’s requirement for the fruiting trees to be accessible by people and animals visiting the park.
  12. Battery Collection - no boxes left for rest of the year. The EAC submitted a larger budget request for 2024. Will purchase more boxes in new year.
  13. RES Update - 2x this year (2023) and 2x in spring - spot treatment of invasives with chemicals and seeding with native grasses and pollinators.

Meeting adjourned at 8:25.